What is Google Authorship and Why Should You Care?

As content creators, we want to have our work viewed by as many eyes as possible. Getting the word out there about what we’ve written, what we’re doing, and where we’re going is important, right?

We like to think that if we create great content, Google will love us and will give us all of the credit that we’re due for being such wonderful innovators of ideas.

The sad truth is, unless you give Google a reason to know who you are, it’s not going to notice…

To put it bluntly, you are nobody to Google until you’re somebody.

Google is great at being able to judge the authority of a domain (a website) based on a number of key factors like traffic, engagement, authority, etc. However, it has no idea who you are or what you’re writing until you stand up and say “Here I am!”

That’s why they introduced the Google Authorship program.

What is Google Authorship?

Google Authorship allows you to link your Google+ profile to the content you create.

Once you create that linkage for Google, then it can start taking note of who you are and what you’re creating. Over time, it will be able to assess your influence and reward you accordingly by giving greater weight to the influential content you create.

Creating the connection between you and your content helps Google make your content feel a bit more personal to interested readers.

Take this recent post I wrote about my experience using Story Cartel.

Personalized Results for Story Cartel SearchThe search result shows my photo as well as my byline, and information about my popularity within Google+ (how many people have me in their circles).

Compare this to another search result that also appears on the first page of Google, and which would you most likely click on?

Alternate Google Result for Story Cartel Search

Given that we are such visual creatures, the one with the photo will typically get quick a few more clicks than the one without, whether it’s a better article or not.

Get It to Work for You

So, how do you put this Google juice to work for you?

If you don’t have one yet, create a Google+ profile first. Make sure you’re using a high quality, professional-looking headshot, because that’s what’s going to be displayed in search results.

After that, go to plus.google.com/authorship, sign up with your email and click on the verification link that is sent to you. Alternatively, you can also link your content to your Google profile.

It’s as easy as that!

The Benefits of Google Authorship

The best part is, once you’ve done it, you’ll actually be able to start reviewing analytics related to how your content is showing up in search results, so that you can start learning what’s working and what’s not.

Googe_Search_Results

For example, my 2nd and 3rd most popular blog posts for the past month both have an average position of 3 on the first page of Google. However, my post on LinkedIn for Authors has a significantly higher click-through rate (22% compared to 4% for the Story Cartel post). Which tells me that there’s a strong interest on the part of authors to know how to use LinkedIn better. That’s probably a compelling reason for me to write more about LinkedIn since authors are my primary readership.

For those of you who truly want to know how to use LinkedIn to the greatest benefit, I recommend you check out my video tutorial service called “The Bite-Sized Marketer.” The whole first course is on LinkedIn Mastery.

It will also help readers discover more of your content on the web and will increase your Google+ following.

Recommended Resource

If you’re interested in learning more about what to do once you’ve established your Google authorship, check out Boost Blog Traffic’s great Google Authorship Handbook.

Pay particular attention to section 4, which talks about your Author Rank and how to boost it! Simply registering for Google authorship won’t guarantee you better results. Working with it, understanding what it is, why it’s important, and what it’s looking for, will help you craft content that your readers adore and the search engine notices.

 

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Tara R. Alemany

Award-winning author and speaker, and owner at Aleweb Social Marketing
Tara Alemany defies a simple definition. She is an award-winning and best-selling author and speaker, as well as a serial entrepreneur. Her publishing company, Emerald Lake Books, benefits experts and thought leaders as they grow their business by taking their words from manuscript to masterpiece. Her consulting company, Aleweb Social Marketing helps authors and speakers to get found online, on-stage and on-the-shelf. In addition to publishing, consulting, writing and speaking, Tara serves on the Boards of Directors for a Christian writers’ critique group, as well as acting as co-president and chaplain of the group. In her spare time, she is a novice winemaker, a martial artist, a juggler, a military Mom to 2 teenagers (one of each), step-Mom to 2 dogs (one of each) and is owned by a black cat.

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